At Boulder Plastic Surgery in Boulder, CO, we proudly offer several procedures to help our clients look younger and slimmer and feel a lot more confident. Among our most popular procedures is a neck lift. Today, we’re looking at how this procedure works, what you’ll need to do beforehand to prepare, and much more to help you determine if it’s a good fit for you.
How Does a Neck Lift Work?
A neck lift enhances the appearance of your neck by manipulating fat and muscle tissues and removing excess skin and tightening loose skin as necessary. This manipulation is accomplished thanks to an incision.
The location of the incision depends on several factors, including your personal preferences and the goals you are trying to achieve. However, the incision is most commonly made in the hairline at the sideburn level, descending and going around the ear, and ending in the back of your head. If your incision is hidden in your hairline, you don’t have to worry about people noticing it while it heals.
What Cosmetic Concerns Can This Procedure Address?
Typically, this procedure is used to erase moderate or severe wrinkles and creases and fix vertical bands of the platysma muscle. It can also be used to lift and tighten loose, sagging neck skin that began to drape due to a severe weakening of neck muscles.
Furthermore, a neck lift can help you redefine your jawline, eliminating jowls. That said, a lower facelift may need to be combined with this procedure to provide you with optimal results if you are concerned about jowls. Finally, people sometimes seek this procedure to treat submental fullness caused by aging or genetics rather than stubborn excess fat deposits.
Am I a Good Candidate for This Procedure?
When determining who is a good candidate for this procedure, we take several factors into consideration. For instance, we need to verify that you are healthy enough for surgery and able to follow all preparation and aftercare rules. We also need to verify that your cosmetic concerns can be treated effectively by this procedure. Generally, you can expect to qualify for this procedure if you are fairly healthy and concerned about the appearance of your neck.
Who Is a Poor Candidate for This Procedure?
Generally, smokers are considered poor candidates for surgery. Tobacco consumption must be avoided during the first two weeks of recovery after surgery. If you’re a smoker with decent heart and lung health and can give up tobacco consumption for several weeks, you may still qualify.
You also may be considered a poor fit for this procedure if you can’t take enough time off from work to dedicate to your recovery. Additionally, we need to evaluate the elasticity of your neck skin before determining if your goals can be achieved with this procedure. If they can’t, we will work with you to come up with an anti-aging treatment plan that meets your needs.
How Should I Prepare for My Procedure?
There are numerous steps you will need to take to ensure a smooth procedure and recovery period. All of these will be covered during your initial consultation, and we’ll send you home with a list so you don’t have to worry about forgetting anything.
One of the most important preparation steps to take prior to surgery is to avoid the consumption of alcohol and tobacco products. Your vitals need to be good at the time of your procedure, and these substances can cause hypertension.
Am I a Good Candidate for a Facelift?
There is a very good chance that you will qualify for a facelift if you are concerned about jowls or a poorly-defined jawline. Nasolabial folds are another sign you may qualify for this procedure.
How Long Will My Recovery Take?
You can generally expect your recovery to take four to six weeks to complete. However, you should feel well-rested enough to go back to sedentary work just 10 to 14 days after surgery. If your job requires a lot of bending, lifting, pushing, and pulling, you may need to take many weeks off from work. How soon you can get back to physically demanding activity depends on how quickly you heal from surgery.
What Can I Do to Recover Faster?
There are a number of highly effective steps you can take to help yourself recover a bit faster from surgery. One of the most effective steps you can take is to ensure you get plenty of adequate rest. Your neck tissues will be healing themselves around the clock after your procedure, but the healing process is most efficient during the REM stage that occurs at the end of each sleep cycle. You should aim to sleep at least nine hours nightly.
Another very effective step you can take to recover faster is to get plenty of gentle exercises. As a good general rule of thumb, you should aim to walk or get other mild cardio for at least 30 minutes daily with no more than two rest days per week. However, it is of the utmost importance that you do not push yourself too hard. Listen to your body carefully, and rest whenever you feel you need to.
What Should I Eat After Surgery?
It is of the utmost importance that you eat plenty of zinc, vitamin C, and protein in the weeks following your procedure. All of these nutrients are required by your skin for the production of collagen. This is an essential protein found in the foundational layer of your skin that plays a major role in skin healing. Great foods to eat to get plenty of vitamin C and protein include seafood, lean cuts of poultry and livestock, citrus and tropical fruits, and dark green vegetables.
It is also a very good idea to consume lots of soluble fiber and water. You will be prescribed an analgesic to take as necessary to ensure your comfort during your recovery. This medication may affect the regularity of your bowel movements if you don’t get enough soluble fiber and water in your post-op diet.
How Long Can I Expect My Results to Last?
As a general rule of thumb, if you take care of your skin health after your procedure, you can expect your ideal results to last for five to 10 years. There are, however, cases of results lasting 10 to 15 years. However, it is not just your post-op skincare routine that affects how long you can expect your desired results to last.
Your age is another factor that affects how long you can expect to enjoy a tight, smooth neck. You can generally expect your results to last longer if you get this procedure when you’re in your 40s rather than your 50s or 60s.
What Can I Do to Enjoy Longer-Lasting Results?
To enjoy results that last for as long as possible, you need to do your best to keep your skin healthy. One effective way to accomplish this is to make sure that you are drinking enough water every day. Your skin is mostly made up of water, so if you’re dehydrated, your skin won’t be as healthy as it can be. In addition to drinking plenty of water each day, you can help to ensure that your skin remains well-hydrated by using an occlusive moisturizer once or twice daily.
Another very effective step you can take to increase the longevity of your results is to minimize your UV exposure. You should not use light-based indoor tanning methods, and you should wear sunscreen being exposed to sunlight. Your skin can still be damaged by UV rays even if you are marginally protected by tinted windows. Not smoking and moderating your consumption of alcohol will also go a long way in keeping your skin young, tight, and smooth for years.
The Bottom Line
The bottom line is that a neck lift can help you look years younger and much slimmer by manipulating your muscle and fat tissues through a small incision. This procedure can also help to improve your appearance by removing any excess skin you may have and tightening your loose skin tissues. If you think this procedure would help you look younger and slimmer would benefit you, schedule an appointment with us at Boulder Plastic Surgery in Boulder, CO.